Oil Spill Disaster
Causes & Consequences
Study the maps of ocean currents below: (1) The Loop Current which circulates within the Gulf of Mexico, (2) the beginning of the Gulf Stream which flows north along eastern Florida, then (3) crosses the Atlantic ocean to western Europe and finally flows up the coast of Norway -- bringing warm water to that northern/arctic region.
Oil reaches the loop current: "Presently, the oil spill continues to spread westward toward Louisiana while at the same time spreading eastward towards Florida panhandle and southeastward towards several eddy features that are associated with theLoop Current. The shape and location of this oil spill is dynamic and is constantly changing and developing due to a combination of local currents and winds, as well as, larger scale features such as the Loop Current...."
Gulf spill's effects 'may not be seen for a decade' : In places the layer of oil and dead animals is 10cm thick. The 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill "devastated" life on and near the seafloor, a marine scientist has said. Studies using a submersible found a layer, as much as 10cm thick in places, of dead animals and oil, said Samantha Joye of the University of Georgia. Knocking these animals out of the food chain will, in time, affect species relevant to fisheries. She disputed an assessment by BP's compensation fund that the Gulf of Mexico will recover by the end of 2012. Millions of barrels of oil spewed into the sea after a BP deepwater well ruptured in April 2010. Professor Joye told the American Association for the Advancement of Science conference in Washington that it may be a decade before the full effects on the Gulf are apparent....."Another critical point is that detrital feeders like sea cucumbers, brittle stars that wander around the bottom, I didn't see a living (sea cucumber) around on any of the wellhead dives. They're typically everywhere, and we saw none."
(August 20, 2010) More oil still in Gulf water than feds say: "A plume of oil some 700 feet thick and at least 22 miles long has been detected deep beneath the Gulf of Mexico. It originated at the Deepwater Horizon blowout and consists of hydrocarbons from the well....The researchers were surprised by the plume's relative stability as well as by an apparent lack of activity on the part of microbes to break down the oil. The continuous plume appeared some 3,000 feet below the surface..."
(August 17) BP relief well threatens another uncontrolled oil spill: "There have been previously undisclosed reasons for BP’s continual delays for the completion of the relief well, not the least of which is the danger of another 'uncontrolled release of crude.' In addition to admitting that 1,000 barrels of oil remain trapped in the area around the casing known as the annulus, BP has now acknowledged that the relief well could cause another oil spill. ...U.S. officials fear new leaks may form when the company pumps in more mud and cement into the bottom of the well for the final plug. Although exactly what would cause those leaks was not disclosed."
BP well pressure test indicates static kill failure: Is BP avoiding the relief well? “The fact that they're getting pressure now tells me that they are indeed communicated to the reservoir below… pressure will build on the wellhead, which is exactly what's happening," said expert Bob Cavnar. Oil Industry insiders have been saying for months that with damage to the casing, which BP quietly admitted to in May, no method of top kill could succeed. Yet BP keeps trying different types of top kill - as if the relief well were something to be avoided."
New studies shows BP oil spill still poses a significant threat to the Gulf Coast region: "Two new scientific studies are raising fears about the effects of the Gulf Coast oil spill. According to the two, independent studies more oil may remain in the Gulf than previously imagined. In addition, the oil may be causing significant damage to underwater habitats in the Gulf of Mexico.... BP and the government have claimed that up to 75% of the oil was either captured, burned, evaporated, or dispersed from the Gulf waters. However, many scientists said that figure was too low, and that even the supposed 25% of oil remaining could cause significant damage."
(August 6) Goldman Sachs sold $250 million of BP stock before spill : Goldman Sachs sold 4,680,822 shares of BP in the first quarter of 2010. Goldman's sales were the largest of any firm during that time. Goldman would have pocketed slightly more than $266 million ....If Goldman had sold these shares today, their investment would have lost 36 percent its value, or $96 million."
(August 3) 100 Days Later, Obama Still Failing the Gulf: "An environmental disaster made worse by federal incompetence. An unnecessary drilling moratorium that has pulled the plug on a Gulf economy already on life support. A claims process that was negotiated in secret, leaving few answers to why claims aren’t being processed and transparency is lost. A slow response that wasted clear weather days as hurricane season fast approaches, and a decision-making structure led by politics rather than duty....
The President’s initial push for cap-and-trade taxes as a response to an oil spill was so disconnected and oblivious that it was quickly brushed off by the Democrat-controlled Senate. Even so, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said yesterday cap-and-trade taxes were still possible this year.
"...the President’s administration failed to issue emergency permits to protect Louisiana’s fragile coastline. Paid-for barriers were delivered, only to sit on the sidelines, as federal bureaucrats spent months debating three-year old emergency operations plans, only to decide not to implement protective measures....
"Efforts were stopped to divert oil into more easily skimmed areas....And even if the oil could’ve been easily skimmed, the skimmers simply weren’t deployed.... Skimmers sat in ports across America waiting for another disaster while this one went ignored. The drilling moratorium takes what is a terrible situation for Gulf residents and turns it into a long-term economic catastrophe....
"But while [Obama's] strong-arming produced a supposed $20 billion payout, it was settled behind closed doors. Americans never saw any contract that was agreed to between our government and BP, yet that didn’t stop the media from celebrating it.... BP is claiming a tax deduction worth roughly $9.9 billion. This means that American taxpayers are either now on the hook for part of the costs of cleanup, if costs truly reach $20 billion.... Additionally, the claims process itself is operating in the dark, with state and local officials unable to track individual claims."
(July 30) Key step to kill Gulf gusher may happen sooner: "Preparations for step one of a two-step attempt to plug the Gulf oil gusher are going well....The so-called static kill is intended to make the job of plugging the well for good easier, and it can begin as soon as crews finish work on the relief well needed for a permanent fix....The static kill is on track for completion some time next week. Then comes the bottom kill, where the relief well will be used to pump in mud and cement; that process will take days or weeks, depending on whether the static kill works."
(July 26) BP plans deep-water drilling off Libya: "...the oil giant faces new scrutiny of its 2007 deal to acquire gas and oil fields off the Libyan coast at a cost of $900 million. At a depth of more than 1700 metres below sea level, the new site in Libya’s Gulf of Sirte will be 200 metres deeper than the Gulf of Mexico well that exploded.... The 2007 agreement has since come under fire from American politicians, after BP revealed that it lobbied the UK government over a prisoner transfer agreement between Britain and Libya."(July 25) BP Is Expected to
Replace Chief With American: "BP’s board is expected on Monday to name an American, Robert Dudley, as its chief executive, replacing Tony Hayward, whose repeated stumbles during the company’s three-month oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico alienated federal and state officials as well as residents of the Gulf Coast....About one-third of the company’s oil and gas wells, refineries and other business interests are in the United States, and 40 percent of its shareholders are Americans... Mr. Hayward... is entitled to at least a year’s salary, equivalent to about $1.6 million, as well as a pension... which would be worth about $11 million when he reaches retirement age."
(July 23) Spill may cost Gulf Coast $22.7 billion in tourism: "...another study raised concerns that new oil spill-related regulations under discussion in Washington could be a severe burden on small oil companies, costing thousands of jobs and lowering government tax revenue."
Obama To Louisiana: Drop Dead: "Numerous speakers appeared before the President’s oil spill commission to plead for the resumption of drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. Even the commission... was inclined to support the lifting of the moratorium.....According to oil industry analysts, the moratorium will cost the state of Louisiana at least 46,000 jobs. Top positions in the industry are already being eliminated, and at least six rigs have left for foreign countries such as Egypt and the Congo. Once these rigs leave, they will not be coming back to Louisiana and the resulting job loss will be permanent...The moratorium is not only harming our local economy, but it is also making our country more dependent on foreign oil and putting our national security at risk."
Oil Spill, Earth Charter & UN "Laws": "As devious as this is, one must admit that this plot to tax the people of the world for using one of the four God-given elements of life, CO2, is truly diabolically ingenious. This conspiracy (yes, this is a conspiracy) perpetually transfers the wealth of the people into the coffers of the Power Elite at enormous financial gain. The ."
Oliver Stone: US should nationalize oil resources: "The Gulf of Mexico oil spill shows that the United States should follow the example of South American socialists in nationalizing its energy industry, filmmaker Oliver Stone said Tuesday. The Academy Award-winning director...said that America's country's natural wealth was too important to be left in private hands, telling journalists... that oil and other natural resources 'belong to the people.' 'This BP oil spill is typical' of what happens when private industry is allowed to draw revenue on what should be a public good."
[Note: But so far, Obama and his czars have made disastrous economic choices -- including contributing to Kenya's election and Palestinian terrorists! Do we want to trust them with our resources?]
(July 21) Oil spill weather turning rough: A tropical storm possible in the Gulf before next week: "Top Hat 10 is holding, and gas bubbles found two miles away were determined to be from an old well, so the status quo remains while BP continues to work on plans for the final plug static kill. It should not be forgotten that plenty of oil is present in the Gulf of Mexico water, and more may get washed up....A tropical storm could bring 15-foot waves into this region."
Oil Spill In China: Avoiding International Waters Necessary: "China has experienced an oil spill unprecedented in their region. The country is working hard to ensure that the slick stays out of international waters to avoid international scrutiny. The leak was caused by a pipeline explosion, which sparked a fire. So far an area of 70 miles has been affected."
(July 20) U.S. lets BP keep well sealed for now: "Federal officials have been conducting a delicate balancing act, relieved that BP has shut down the monster leak with a new cap but also worried that the seal could force oil out of the well hole into the seabed and create the equivalent of a deep-sea oil volcano. Monitoring has revealed several 'anomalies,' including a small leak in the cap seal and bubbles."
(July 19) Louisiana constructing islands in the gulf to aid in oil cleanup: "BP, the government and an army of volunteers are fighting to contain and clean the millions of gallons of oil spewing from the site of the Deepwater Horizon explosion in the Gulf of Mexico."
Louisiana constructing islands in the gulf to aid in oil cleanup: "...more than 15 miles offshore, a dredging company is building an island about as wide as an interstate highway. This sandy strip is slowly getting bigger, as dredged-up mud gurgles and creaks down its spine in a rusty pipe and shoots out to form new land at its end....Officially called Sand Berm E-4, it is part of this state's most ambitious plan to combat the oil and at the same time help stave off long-term coastal erosion....Louisiana officials say the most reliable way to stop the oil from reaching sensitive marshes is to put solid land -- built from sandbags, sand piles or plain old rocks -- in its way."
Remember the Gulf! "It has now been nearly 3 months since the Deepwater Horizon platform exploded.... Over that time, the outflow has gotten worse, goals have been missed and attention has waned. The Gulf oil spill may be the first time in U.S. history that a president and the national media’s attention need to be refocused on a crisis while it is still, in fact, underway.....Obama’s cabinet, including the EPA, continues to let ridiculous regulations stand in the way of oil being removed from the water. ...thousands of volunteers remain on the sidelines endlessly waiting for instructions. Skimmers remain docked at port.....Let's pray..."
(July 12) You Are Not Authorized To See These Pictures Of The Oil Spill Citizen, ...Do Not Look! : The title is a parody of the fact that the government has effectively made it a felony to take pictures of oiled wildlife....More importantly, while some of these photos have been widely seen, most have not, and I have never seen them rounded up in a single page before."
(July 7) First Amendment suspended in the Gulf of Mexico: "CNN reports how the U.S. government is colluding with BP to censor the media in the Gulf of Mexico so they can't film or take pictures of the damage being done by the oil spill."
Russia prepares to drill for oil off Cuban coast in spite of Obama ban: "...while Obama is against the U.S. doing offshore drilling, it helped Brazil underwrite it in the Tupi oil field near Rio de Janeiro....
"By drilling off the Cuban coast, Russia is said to be establishing a new presence in the Western Hemisphere as it recently concluded four contracts securing oil-exploration rights in Cuba’s economic zone in the Gulf of Mexico."
(July 5) Egregious Polluting Agency [EPA]: "'Hi, I'm from the government, and I'm here to help.' ...The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) blocked skimmer systems offered by the Dutch because water discharged back into the Gulf after processing wouldn't be sufficiently oil-free. It doesn't matter that the water put back into the ocean would have been much cleaner than what was taken out of the ocean."
(July 1) Why Is the Gulf Cleanup So Slow? "Various skimmers and tankers (some of them very large) are available that could eliminate most of the oil from seawater, discharging the mostly clean water while storing the oil onboard. While this would clean vast amounts of water efficiently, the EPA is unwilling to grant a temporary waiver of its regulations....
"Next, the Obama administration can waive the Jones Act, which restricts foreign ships from operating in U.S. coastal waters. Many foreign countries (such as the Netherlands and Belgium) have ships and technologies that would greatly advance the cleanup. So far, the U.S. has refused to waive the restrictions of this law and allow these ships to participate in the effort....In addition, the federal government can free American-based skimmers. Of the 2,000 skimmers in the U.S...only 400 have been sent to the Gulf. Federal barriers have kept the others on stations elsewhere in case of other oil spills...
"As the government fails to implement such simple and straightforward remedies, one must ask why. ....Another possibility is that the administration places a higher priority on interests other than the fate of the Gulf, such as placating organized labor....Finally there is the most pessimistic explanation—that the oil spill may be viewed as an opportunity... [The] oil spill may be a strategic justification in a larger battle....'a clean energy future.'" In the meantime, how about a cleaner Gulf?"
(June 29) Oil washes onto Mississippi coast for first time: "'We cannot clean up or catch the oil until BP gets here. They have all of our people,' said Earl Etheridge, a spokesman for Mississippi's Department of Environmental Quality. 'We want to clean this up now."
How Obama bungled the oil spill: "...Alabama decided on a backup plan. It would buy snare booms to catch the oil as it began to wash up on the beaches. But…the Fish and Wildlife Administration vetoed the plan saying it would endanger sea turtles that nest on the beaches. So, Alabama — ever resourceful — decided to hire 400 workers to patrol the beaches in person scooping up oil that had washed ashore. But…OSHA (the Occupational Safety and Health Agency) refused to allow them to work more than twenty minutes out of every hour..."
(June 27) Governor Jindal Orders June 27th as Statewide Day of Prayer for Perseverance Through Oil Spill Crisis: "WHEREAS, Louisiana is entering the 66th day of an economic and environmental crisis caused by the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico...and,
"WHEREAS, [the oil spill] already has a profound effect on Louisiana, its coastline and its people and our entire Louisiana way of life; and,
"WHEREAS, The people of coastal Louisiana are being directly impacted by the closure of our waters for fishing and oyster harvesting and many are struggling to make ends meet or provide for their families; and...
"WHEREAS, Louisiana’s people are coming together to help each other now during this time of crisis just as they have persevered through losses before; and Louisiana fishermen, shrimpers and oyster harvesters are now on the frontlines of the oil spill, fighting to protect our coast;...
"NOW, THEREFORE, I, Bobby Jindal, Governor of the State of Louisiana, do hereby proclaim June 27, 2010 as a Statewide Day of Prayer..." See Prayer
(June 25)Call to Prayer by Gulf State Leaders: "Historically in America, whenever there has been a crisis, our civic leaders have called our cities, states, and even our nation to prayer, asking for God's help and guidance. They understood that help would come only through calling out for God's intervention. Today, the Gulf Coast States face a crisis with the oil spill that has threatened health, homes, and jobs, in addition to a number of other problems - and there doesn't seem to be a successful solution close at hand. So the elected leaders of the Gulf Coast States - Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida - are calling for a day of prayer in their states this coming Sunday, June 27."
(June 24) Oil Spill. Latest blunder feeds frustration in the Gulf: "Even before the latest setback, the government's worst-case estimates suggested the cap and other equipment were capturing less than half of the oil leaking from the sea floor....The spill began arriving in sheets of oil on the Florida coast... and fouled some of Mississippi's most fertile coastal waters.... Worst-case government estimates are that about 2.5 million gallons are leaking from the well, though no one really knows for sure... In Florida, officials closed a quarter-mile stretch of Pensacola Beach not far from the Alabama line when thick pools of oil washed up.... Lifeguard Collin Cobia wore a red handkerchief over his nose and mouth to block the oil smell. 'It's enough to knock you down,' he said."
Soros’s Oil Spill Payoff: "Within 48 hours after President Obama issued the six-month moratorium on deep-water drilling, the George Soros-backed Brazilian oil company, Petrobras, contacted a large New Orleans company.... The company was seeking to lease all its vessels. 'If the moratorium on deep-water drilling is not lifted, semi-submersible rigs and/or drill ships affected will simply go to other countries.'...
"Wasn’t it enough of a payback to Soros when the Obama Administration loaned up to $10 billion to Petrobras? Soros, with his far left-wing organization, MoveOn, is called the Godfather of world socialism.... He has urged adoption of a global carbon tax. Could it be more than coincidence that his position is strikingly similar to what Obama called for in his June 14 Oval Office speechon the Gulf oil spill...?...
"The moratorium could mean the loss of at least 20,000 jobs, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal wrote in a letter to Obama. 'The last thing we need is to enact public policies that will certainly destroy thousands of existing jobs while preventing the creation of thousands more.'...Each drilling platform idled by the ban puts 1,400 jobs at risk...
"For us to move internationally, we will have to compete with vessels built in foreign yards at a much lower cost and often subsidized by foreign governments.... The moratorium may well be the death-knell for U.S. businesses engaged in the energy service sector…Obama is costing the nation trillions in revenues and scores of thousands of new jobs. Meanwhile, his pal and sponsor, George Soros will see his investment in Brazil’s Petrobras turn a pretty profit when oil prices rise, as surely they will if U.S. resources are not tapped."
(June 21) The Obama administration has been caught, once again, blocking cleanup efforts: "Governor Bobby Jindal had ordered the state’s fleet of sixteen vacuum barges to clean up oil in the Louisiana marshes. On Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard intercepted the barges and ordered them to stop the cleanup. Ostensibly, the Coast Guard wanted to 'inspect' the barges — but then it didn’t inspect them.... Finally on Thursday afternoon Governor Jindal was able to apply enough political and media pressure that the federal government backed off and allowed the barges to get back to work on Thursday afternoon....
"Jindal was able to enjoy a few moments of well-earned relaxation — until he discovered that the federals were once again blocking half of his cleanup fleet..... Jindal expressed the frustration that most Americans are feeling with the inexplicable federal opposition to cleaning up this spill, 'What’s so frustrating is the stories kept changing. Yesterday morning, they said we’re shutting down. Then, they can’t find the boats to go out and inspect. They didn’t realize that they’d approved them already.'
Pictures: Sticky mess: The Gulf oil spill's impact on nature: "Crude oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill washes ashore in Orange Beach, Ala., on June 12. Large amounts of the oil battered the Alabama coast, leaving deposits of the slick mess some 4-6 inches thick on the beach in some parts.
Video: Evidence of more media restrictions on BP oil spill beaches : Interesting footage from Louisiana TV station WDSU-TV showing its reporter arguing the toss with BP security guards attempting to stop him from interviewing clean-up workers on a local beach affected by the oil spill. See ARTICL
Documents Show Early Worries About Safety of Rig: "Internal documents from BP show that there were serious problems and safety concerns with the Deepwater Horizon rig far earlier than those the company described to Congress last week.... And as far back as 11 months ago, it was concerned about the well casing and the blowout preventer. On June 22 [last year], for example, BP engineers expressed concerns that the metal casing the company wanted to use might collapse under high pressure....
"In April of this year, BP engineers concluded that the casing was 'unlikely to be a successful cement job,' according to a document, referring to how the casing would be sealed to prevent gases from escaping up the well. The document also says that the plan for casing the well is 'unable to fulfill M.M.S. regulations,' referring to the Minerals Management Service...”
(June 20) Day 61: The Latest on the Oil Spill: "Hundreds of workers hired by BP to help with the cleanup are complaining that they traveled long distances only to be told that their jobs had been given to local residents.
"Governors of the four affected states have made it clear to BP officials that they want residents hired first. Subcontractors arranging the labor say they must follow the desires of BP and the governors if they hope to win and to keep contracts."
With No Gulf Solution in Sight, Louisiana Turns to Prayer: "Thus far efforts made by mortals to try to solve the crisis have been to no avail,' CNN reported Adley saying in a statement released last week. 'It is clearly time for a miracle for us.' As oil continues to gush from the broken oil well and wash ashore in Louisiana and other Gulf states, citizens are furious that neither BP nor the Obama administration has been able to come up with a viable solution."
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